Anyone who knows me knows that I'm not this softy Mom who worries about her kid all the time. I don't call her all the time; I don't cling. But I'll be the first to admit it: I'm sentimental. I guess I'm just wired that way.
Today I sent my pre-teen off to the bus-stop for middle school. First time riding a bus, first time having to switch to seven different classes, first time to have the freedom to sit where she pleases at lunch.
Even though I had little butterflies in my tummy this morning, SHE was as cool as a cucumber. She got up early, got ready, checked her e-mail, showed me a few funny YouTube videos, then casually said, "I guess I better head out now."
I told her that I was just going to walk out with Suki (our dog) and make sure she got on the bus okay. She told me THAT wasn't necessary. Cool. But I had to make sure anyway, so I agreed not to walk with her to the bus-stop, not to take any pictures in front of the other kids, and to most certainly NOT wave good-bye when she was on the bus.
Suki and I headed down the street in the other direction, cutting through the bushes at the end of the street so we could get a good view of the bus-stop from about a quarter mile away. I strolled up and down with my coffee and my pup, waiting for the bus to come past. (It has to pass by first, then come back for the kids) When the bus came roaring by, my heart leaped in my chest a little bit.
"This is it," I thought, "My baby is gettin' on that bus."
I thought I was doing okay until I saw the bus coming back around for the kids. Then I got a little choked up. With happy tears in my eyes, I watched as she got in line and filed into the bus with the others. The bus driver shut the doors and started pulling toward us.
Remembering the rule I agreed to, I quickly crouched down and started petting Suki as the bus rolled by. I snuck a peak as it passed, but I certainly did NOT wave.
Off we went in our separate directions.
I can't wait to hear about her first day when she comes home this afternoon. But I'll have to remember to keep my cool and not get too excited.
Well, that's not too sentimental after all, right? Never mind the part where I went on my early morning run this morning and jogged through her elementary school parking lot to say good-bye to that phase in her life...